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Aug 17, 2014 01:52 PM

Anywhere Similar to Rendezvous?

For the past six years Rendezvous has been the go to restaurant for my bf's parents when they come to visit. Price point, location, service, food and cocktails were perfect after their 5 hours in the car. Are there similar restaurants in the Cambridge/Watertown area? I was thinking Strip T's, but is there anywhere else? Not Oleana, Hungry Mother, Craigie's or West Bridge.


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  1. I really liked and will miss Rendezvous. EVOO and Catalyst might do. While I like the food at Strip T's it isn't a "relaxing" place: often loud and not very comfortable physically especially that downstairs bathroom!

    1 Reply
    1. re: teezeetoo

      Yeah, I was including Strip T's because of food, location, and service. Somewhere with consistency, easy to park, and takes reservations on a Friday. But I did forget about the noise and comfort level.

      1. re: LeoLioness

        Bergamot is what I was thinking. Also, Sycamore in Newton, but that might be further than you want to go.

        1. re: johndory

          Sycamore is already on the list of possibile restaurants, I'll have to add Bergamot. Parking and location are what made me hesitant to add Bergamot. But price and menu both look good.

          1. re: viperlush

            according to their website, Bergamot has off street parking.

            1. re: viperlush

              Madrid is correct. There is a parking lot for Bergamot at night, entrance is off of Beacon. I really wanted to love Bergamot like we loved Rendezvous, but just don't.

              1. re: viperlush

                I can't speak to the parking lot situation (I walk or take the bus there) but I thought of it because like Rendezvous, I consider it solid with excellent service, but not trendy, young or particularly loud. Where it falls short of Rendezvous is a more limited menu, especially in the bar area.

                Someone here once described the atmosphere as like a wedding reception and I can't say I disagree, but sometimes that's preferable to something more chaotic, particularly with older people.

                1. re: viperlush

                  Update: Bergamot was a partial success. I think it's been noted on a different thread, but the portion sizes were so inconsistent. BF's charcuterie and veal main were enough for two. While my corn soup and grilled swordfish were barely enough for me. I also like desserts that are more than a couple bites. It was also difficult to find dishes with out garlic. Also quite loud and cramped tables. Wine didn't arrive until midway through the entrees. But everyone enjoyed their meals (we thankfully had a large lunch that day) and drinks. Not somewhere I bring either set of parents. It is probably better as a date night restaurant for bf and I.

                  Unfortunately Strip T's is off the list since they don't do reservations.

                  At least I have until next April or Oct to find somewhere else for their next visit.

            2. What about East Coast Grill? They have a lot across the street for night/weekend parking. Although Chris Schlesinger is out of the picture, it still resonates with his vibe, and some of the menu classics. The grilled white pepper-crusted tuna remains outstanding.

              6 Replies
              1. re: MaxEntropy

                Unfortunately ECG, which used to be a favorite of mine, is a far cry from Rendezvous in many, many respects.

                1. re: MaxEntropy

                  For others looking for a substitute maybe, but ECG is one of my least favorite restaurants in the area.

                  1. re: viperlush

                    Perhaps I'm overly sentimental about ECG (my first/blind date with my wife was there), but I still get a thrill out of the tuna taco. And the grilled banana sundae with mango ice cream and caramel. And the kitschy light-up lava in the Tiki Room. And a better than decent Margarita.

                    1. re: MaxEntropy

                      Even in its best days, there was nothing particularly Rendezvouish about East Coast Grill.

                      1. re: Blumie

                        The styles were different but Steve Johnson and Chris Schlesinger cooked together and shared quite a few recipes so I would say once upon a time ECG could hold its own though the venues were never alike. Loved the old ECG and loved Rendezvous.

                        1. re: teezeetoo

                          In thinking about it, one thing the places did share was the quality of the service and the dedication of the staff.

                2. Puritan & Company? Slightly higher price point, different culinary frame of reference.. On our last visit (last year), we recognized one of our waitstaff from Rendezvous, actually. I assume you're not interested in Harvard Square due to parking issues.

                  4 Replies
                  1. re: youngho

                    I was thinking Puritan & Co too. Accessible but interesting food, really delicious, comfortable enough for parents.

                    1. re: youngho

                      I could do Harvard Square, but not really interested in Harvest, Beat Hotel, Russell House or Ten Tables. A&h is a possibility though.

                      1. re: viperlush

                        Right, you guessed what I was thinking, but parking can be a little tricky. Price point will also end up being a little higher after adding up the small plates, but the service, food, and cocktails are simply fantastic. Although we liked the room, too, we can't speak to the noise factor because we do tend to eat on the earlier side with our children.

                    2. Rialto? Arlen?

                      in Boston, Asta, ICOB

                      You have ruled out Craigie's, but that is really the closest match in my opinion.

                      4 Replies